Less than a month before the release of X-Men Origins: Wolverine comes news that another spin-off from the lucrative X-Men franchise is going to be yet another prequel.
When X-Men: First Class was first announced, many thought that it would follow the adventures of the younger mutants from the high grossing franchise. Now Lauren Shuler-Donner has given details on what to expect from the film - if Wolverine hits it big at the box office.
Speaking on the Fox Movie Channel Donner gave details about the First Class prequel, which is currently in development (being written by Josh Schwartz):
"It is the first class of Xavier's school, way back when, so it's young Scott, young Jean, young Beast and that'll be really fun, I think (the plan) is to follow some of the characters into their own stories, and weave them back into the X-Men world."
"And hopefully First Class will become its own franchise and we can follow them as they grow up."
It's a shame, really, that this is yet another X-Men prequel to follow Wolverine and the forthcoming Magneto. Marvel and Fox appear to be milking the X-Men franchise for all that it's worth. However, as per both studios, they're going for the cheapest option. The X-Men movies just got too expensive to make with Halle Berry winning an Oscar and Hugh Jackman going A-list.
Prequels with younger stars and built-in name recognition seem to be the order of the day - except of course Wolverine, because that has become Jackman's signature role. Will Patrick Stewart have a role in X-Men: First Class? Who knows. But I'd imagine that he'll have a cameo at the very least, probably using the same de-aging tech they used for his X-Men: The Last Stand flashback.
Will X-Men: First Class see the light of day? That depends on how many people downloaded and watched go to see Wolverine.
X-Men: Origins: Wolverine opens on May 1, 2009. X-Men: First Class is still in early development, so no date yet on when (or if) the film will be hitting theaters. We'll keep you posted.